Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Techno Tornadoes

I love the movie Twister. I know it’s cheesy and I know the acting is really bad. I know all this and don’t care because I am fascinated by tornadoes. Their power, capriciousness, destructive capability – I find it all amazing. However, I’ve realized meteorological tornadoes aren’t the only whirlwinds leaving massive debris fields. We are all in the path of technological tornadoes and if we don’t stay ahead of them, we’re going to end up like trailer parks after an F5.

Bobby and I were the first of our friends to have a home computer. Now grade school kids are more techno-savvy than we are! The winds of technological advancement are spinning at an ever-increasing pace.

I recently told my hubby I wanted to buy some music cd’s. He told me, in effect, I needed to embrace the future. Cd’s were so 20th century. In the future we will download our music. (Sony music executives were recently quoted saying much the same thing.) We’ve purchased an MP3 player and my hubby is downloading lectures he previously would have bought on CDs. (Our attempt at catching up with preteens’ capabilities!)

Then, a day after 60 Minutes ran a story about how geeks and nerds are getting their revenge selling their geek know-how to the technologically challenged masses, a friend of mine blogged about the mysteries of texting. (It was only last year I mastered texting!)

60 Minutes reminded me: "A dozen years ago, when Stephens started the Geek Squad, most people used IBM computers, and primitive Microsoft software; the Internet was still a novelty. Today, thousands of products and providers allow you to watch TV shows, make phone calls, download music, print color photos and dictate letters without leaving your desktop, if you have the time, the patience, the aptitude, and the available brain cells to master yet another software protocol. "

This is our parents’ revenge - just as they were swept up in the tornado of microwaves, VCRs, ATMs and the like, now it’s our turn. Now the girls and guys of the 80s who laughed at their parents' VCRs blinking 12:00 are dealing with all the anagrams whirling around in their heads – MP3, iPods, PDAs, TIVO, auto bill pay . . . And according to Geek Squad founder Robert Stephens, the Internet revolution is really just beginning.

The techno tornadoes have touched down. I need to go stock my storm cellar!

1 comment:

RosieBoo said...

I remember in high school being one of the last people to have cable and an answering machine. When I lamented to my Dad about it, he said, "tell them we still beat our clothes out on a rock too." :) I love my Dad!